Abusive Relationships?

What it's really like being in one and what people don't understand who haven't experienced one.

Abusive Relationships?

Relationships; when you think of one you think of all the good times you could have with someone not the downhill battle that lies underneath. The truth of who someone really is is hidden underneath their skin that shows when they become angry at you or someone else. How hard it is to picture someone you love being that way.

I know from experience what it's like to be trapped in a relationship where you know they aren't good for you, but you're too scared to escape the torture. When people think of "abuse" they automatically think of physical, but there's more. A person can abuse you without ever laying a hand on you. They can emotionally and verbally abuse you, in the end it all hurts the same way. You begin to think down on yourself and defend the relationship when you know they aren't good for you.

I met this guy when I was a freshman in high school but it wasn't until about a year later when we took things seriously and became a couple. I thought things were great and that nothing could ever go wrong or get bad. I was wrong. I was blinded by what I thought was love but in reality was a broken heart and mixed emotions. We were on and off for years until the birth of my daughter. It's scary how much a person can change in only a few months.

Screaming. Yelling. Nasty voicemails and texts are what I'm reminded of. Police reports that stay with me and the memories of each incident. A person can say they are sorry a million times but do they really mean it? Probably not. It was a never-ending cycle. He dragged me back into a relationship with him pretending that he was going to change for the better, he was a different person and he loved me. He lied. I was young and dumb taunted by what I hoped was love but was really lies, cheating, and abuse. The pain that will somehow never leave my side. The thought of never being able to trust a man again. The guilt of stress and pain I put on my body and while I was pregnant.

The day I finally left was the happiest day of my life. I no longer have to deal with the lies, cheating, and the abuse I dealt with for years. I no longer feel it's my job to defend him even though in my heart I know he's wrong. I no longer cry myself to sleep and feel like I'm the bad guy. I'm the victim. I don't have to worry about calling the police for help because he won't let me leave or calling my parents to come pick me up. I don't have to look at his face anymore, I can see the nasty person he truly is. The words that replay in the back of my brain will never go away. How easy it is for someone who has to be strong for their little girl but behind her skin breaks down so easy by the touch a finger. How the touch of a police officer makes you feel safer than the touch of your lovers.

People always ask me, why'd you stay for so long? Why'd you deal with that? Why'd you go back to him? But my answer is, have you ever been in an abusive relationship? You want to believe that they are going to change, even though in the back of your head you know they won't. You're scared to leave the relationship because you don't know what that person is going to do to you, your family, or your friends. Depression becomes your number one friend. All you want to do is lay in bed and sleep. You play games on your phone but you only text that one person. You lie to your family and friends when they ask you how you are or if you're ok. But honestly you're lying to yourself. Your anxiety picks up and becomes worse. It's hard to breathe sometimes. Your cheeks are tear stained as you sit on the bathroom floor asking why? Why me? You have to pick yourself back up and dust yourself off. Be positive. Be strong. But how? A guy raises his hand and you immediately feel a twitch in your stomach and think back to the memories or the pain you had previously. A single text from someone makes your heart break. You become emotionless and depression sinks back into your chest.

Time. Time eventually heals. The pain, never truly goes away. I'm a victim but I'm not keeping that title plastered onto my skin. I'm learning. I'm finally free. Free from someone that can no longer hurt me, someone who may have broken me down but I got back up. I'm making progress, fake smiles here and there, but I did it. I finally broke free from a cycle that was never ending and keeping me down.

Read next: 'Chocolate Kisses'
Rachel Cross
See all posts by Rachel Cross